It seems hard to believe that my time in the presidential role has come to an end, and this is my final email to you all. I would be untruthful if I said this hasn’t been a tough year to have held this volunteer role, for so many reasons. But it has also been a very rewarding year. I have had the extreme pleasure of working with many of our creative and dedicated POD Network colleagues as we tackled numerous projects. And throughout it all, I have done my best to be a good steward of our organization as I pass along the presidential responsibility to our colleague, Francine Glazer.

Fran is stepping into this role during a very challenging yet exciting time for our organization. We will be embarking on a year-long process of examination, unlearning, and relearning in our quest to become a more equity-minded organization. And I believe that we are well poised to do this work. 

As I see it, we’re a “middle-aged” organization. Like a midlife person, hopefully this means we can leverage the kind of wisdom that develops with time and experience. From the past 45 years, we have learned to take steps and apologize for missteps. We are aware of the importance of context, and that everyone experiences it in their own way. We value relationships and do what we can to foster opportunities for connections. We recognize that we don’t have all the answers, and that the questions we ask are actually more important. We see that we are a work in progress, and that we can and will continue to learn and change. We are on a journey, and I have been honoured to be part of it.

You will hear from Fran during her presidential year about our upcoming work with an external consultant group who will help us with the next phase of the POD Network’s journey. And I will continue by her side for that year—along with our President-Elect Carol Hurney—as I move to the Past President role.

Thank you for the opportunity to have served an organization that is vitally important to so many, and that continues to enhance my own professional and personal development through your efforts and contributions. Best wishes to you all this summer, and I look forward to staying in touch and working with many of you in the years to come.

Sincerely,

Donna

Dr. Donna Ellis
POD Network President
Director, Centre for Teaching Excellence
University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON Canada
donnae@uwaterloo.ca